ANTH 2040 - Ethnography: Engaged Social Research

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2015

Ethnography is engaged social research. Ethnographers explore social life as social beings engaged in social contexts. Ethnographic research has broad possibilities: it can be curiosity driven or applied to practical concerns. Ethnographic research can take you around the world, around the corner, or online. It can be focused in a single site, be multi-sited, local or global. Ethnographers document and analyse the social life we engage with visually, audibly, literally and virtually. Ethnographers employ an ensemble of analytically-informed research techniques including participant-observation, interviews, surveys, photography, social mapping, genealogy, and archival and documentary research. We collect and analyse local ephemera like brochures, invitations, posters, gig guides, and web pages. In this campus-based practicum you will be immersed in ethnographic research and its possibilities. Lectures frame the course. Workshops introduce ethnographic skills, analysis and theory. In assignments you will develop this knowledge in a process which culminates in deep engagement with an existing body of ethnography or in designing and planning your own ethnographic research project. This course is for people who are curious and seek new insight into contemporary conundrums. For those aiming for a career in social science, anthropology or qualitative research this course is a foundation for professional practice.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code ANTH 2040
    Course Ethnography: Engaged Social Research
    Coordinating Unit Anthropology and Development Studies
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites At least 12 units of level 1 Arts courses
    Incompatible ANTH 2030
    Course Description Ethnography is engaged social research. Ethnographers explore social life as social beings engaged in social contexts. Ethnographic research has broad possibilities: it can be curiosity driven or applied to practical concerns. Ethnographic research can take you around the world, around the corner, or online. It can be focused in a single site, be multi-sited, local or global. Ethnographers document and analyse the social life we engage with visually, audibly, literally and virtually. Ethnographers employ an ensemble of analytically-informed research techniques including participant-observation, interviews, surveys, photography, social mapping, genealogy, and archival and documentary research. We collect and analyse local ephemera like brochures, invitations, posters, gig guides, and web pages.
    In this campus-based practicum you will be immersed in ethnographic research and its possibilities. Lectures frame the course. Workshops introduce ethnographic skills, analysis and theory. In assignments you will develop this knowledge in a process which culminates in deep engagement with an existing body of ethnography or in designing and planning your own ethnographic research project.
    This course is for people who are curious and seek new insight into contemporary conundrums. For those aiming for a career in social science, anthropology or qualitative research this course is a foundation for professional practice.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Dianne Rodger

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 Gain an understanding of the methods and issues associated with anthropological research, in particular principles of ethical research.
    2 Apply anthropological knowledge and research methods to a variety of real world contexts.
    3 Practice social research skills used in anthropology including participant-observation, interviews, social mapping and genealogy.
    4 Recognise the relationship between the development of social science theory and research practice.
    5 Develop the ability to locate and analyse relevant scholarly literature.
    6 Develop communication and teamwork skills.
    7 Gain knowledge of what an ethnographic orientation to research offers our understanding of social life and the human condition.
    University Graduate Attributes

    No information currently available.

  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    All course material, including the course outline and links to all required workshop and supplementary readings are available on the MyUni website. If students wish to purchase a hard copy of the tutorial readings, the course reader will be available via the Image and Copy Centre.
    Online Learning
    MyUni will be used for course-related material including lecture recordings, announcements and discussion boards.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Lectures supported by problem-solving tutorials developing material covered in lectures
    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    1 x 1-hour lecture (or equivalent) per week --12 hours per semester
    1 x 2-hour seminar (or equivalent) per week --24 hours per semester
    5 hours reading per week --60 hours per semester
    3 hours research per week --36 hours per semester
    2 hours assessment preparation per week --24 hours per semester

    TOTAL WORKLOAD 156 hours per semester
    Learning Activities Summary
    Schedule
    Week 1 First encounters with ethnography
    Week 2 Ethnographic research, ethics and informed consent
    Week 3 Socio-spatial mapping
    Week 4 Participant observation
    Week 5 Interviews with genealogies
    Week 6 Guided interviewing exercise
    Week 7 Getting started on a research proposal about ...
    Week 8 Thinking conceptually about ...
    Week 9 Possibilities for an ethnographic approach to ...
    Week 10 Designing a research project about ...
    Week 11 Practical and ethical challenges to the study of ...
    Week 12 Reflections on the ethnographic experience
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Weighting
    Research portfolio 35%
    Presentation in a workshop debate 15%
    Research proposal 40%
    Workshop attendance and participation 10%
    Assessment Related Requirements

    1. Research portfolio (35%)
    Your research portfolio will present your development in relation to the practical research skills introduced in this course. Throughout the semester, we will introduce you to ethnographic research practices such as socio-spatial mapping, conducting an interview, taking a genealogy and participant observation. In workshops you will be able to practice these skills. For your first assignment – the research portfolio – you are asked to take these ethnographic exercises to completion.

    2. Workshop Debate (15%)
    Selected workshops will be concerned with debating contemporary issues in ethnography. All students will present material for one side of one of these debates. Students who are presenting are expected to not only draw upon any readings provided or recommended, but also explore the issue further through their own research. Students are asked to present their case using various media (such as handouts, DVDs, powerpoint, etc), and to engage their student audience through questions, quizzes and so on. Each debate (including all related activities) can take up to 40min. You are encouraged to present your topic as a team of usually three students.
    The debates will be marked on the following criteria:
    1. Clarity/cogency of the position presented and understanding of key concepts
    2. Research beyond the required readings
    3. Engaging the learning of fellow students
    4. Presentation through a variety of media (use of handouts; overheads; powerpoint; DVDs; posters; whiteboard etc).
    A presentation of a debate which covers the topic well, but only consists of students reading from written notes will only get a passing grade. The aim is to engage others in learning with content about the topic.

    3. Research Proposal (40%)
    Your final assignment is a Research Proposal of 3000 words. Lectures in the second half of the semester will provide you with examples on how to produce a good research proposal. You are free to choose a research topic that interests you. In order to ensure that your research project fits the requirements of the discipline of Anthropology and of this course, it is important that you discuss your ideas with your tutor. 
    As there are few set readings in the second part of the semester you are expected to read independently (and widely) on your chosen research topic and integrate these readings into your proposal.

    Your submitted Research Proposal needs to include:
    • the title for your research project
    • an abstract of the proposal
    • a literature-based critical discussion of the broad topic of research
    • a discussion of a "problem"/gap in the literature as the specific focus for the proposed research
    • a compelling case/argument for a 3 year ethnographically based research project to address the „problem‟/gap
    • a research plan outlining the context/place for fieldwork, the range of methodologies to be used, how these will be used, why they have been considered etc
    • a discussion of the ethical issues raised by the proposal, including relevant ethics material
    • a detailed "gant chart" of research stages and methods
    4. Workshop participation (10%)
    All students are expected to attend all workshops of this course and come prepared. Workshops will have required readings that need to be completed and considered prior to the workshop. Many workshops in this course will have a practical component to be completed whilst in class.

    If students miss more than 2 workshops without justification and documentation accepted by the course coordinator (e.g. a medical or counselling certificate) they will lose all possible marks for this component.
    Assessment Detail

    No information currently available.

    Submission
    All written assignments must be submitted electronically via Turnitin using the MyUni website. For assistance in submitting your assignment electronically, please click on the ‘Submitting a Turnitin Assignment as a Student’ tutorial at:

    http://www.adelaide.edu.au/myuni/student/tutorials/content/Turnitin-Submitting-a-Turnitin-Assignment-as-a-Student.html

    Unless your tutor has agreed to it, assignments that are simply emailed to a tutor are not considered as submitted.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

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  • Policies & Guidelines
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